Pittonkatonk Hosts May Day Brass BBQ and Festival


Pittonkatonk Hosts May Day Brass BBQ and Festival

National Acts, Local Artists and Audiences Unite at Unique Community Festival

PITTSBURGH – Pittonkatonk announces plans for its annual May Day Brass BBQ and festival, which will take place on Saturday May 2nd from 2:00 – 8:00 pm at the Vietnam Veterans Pavilion in Schenley Park. Pittonkatonk is an all-ages community-supported brass music festival and picnic where audiences and performers break down the traditional barriers between stage and dance floor. Now in its second year, Pittonkatonk uses the unifying medium of brass music to bring together diverse communities, from high school marching bands to traditional Balkan brass bands and hip hop/jazz ensembles.

This year’s festival will bring in famed national acts including What Cheer? Brigade (Providence), Pitchblak Brass Band (New York City), Black Bear Combo (Chicago) and Detroit Party Marching Band (Detroit); local acts Beauty Slap, May Day Marching Band, Col. Eagleburger’s Goodtime Highstepping Band and Slide Worldwide Brass Band; as well as collaborative performances with local high school marching bands including University Prep (Hill District). The festival will also include a giant community barbeque, and family-friendly activities courtesy of Pittsburgh Center for Creative Reuse, Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh’s Makeshop and other local community organizations.

In advance of the festival, Pittonkatonk will also hold a supplemental 3-day educational program between featured festival band What Cheer? Brigade (Providence) and the University Prep Junior and Senior High Marching Bands (Hill District). The intensive workshop will highlight the band’s role from a historical perspective, provide insights of the business of touring/working as a full time musician, and focus on the role of a community band in creating positive change and social justice. The partnership will culminate in a collaborative performance at the May 2nd festival.

With a focus on community, Pittonkatonk juxtaposes different types of music, cultures, and backgrounds to bring together a unique mix of people who might not otherwise convene at a show. Unique to Pittonkatonk, musicians and audiences engage on a social level, blurring the lines between performer and the spectator and creating a barrier-free experience for all to live, learn, celebrate, and dance. Last year’s Pittonkatonk event and affiliate programs reached 700 people, and the organizers hope to continue to make Pittonkatonk a May Day weekend tradition.

All ages are welcome. Although there is no required admission charge, the event is fully community-supported and monetary donations and/or pot-luck style food donations are strongly suggested. An IndieGoGo crowdfunding campaign is also in effect until May 4 and backers are greatly appreciated. For more information visit www.pittonkatonk.com or email pittonkatonk@gmail.com.


Pittonkatonk was co-founded by Pete Spynda (of “Pandemic” fame) and Rich Randall (of the Listening Spaces Project). For 10 years, Pandemic has hosted monthly global music dance parties that celebrate both traditional folk and contemporary dance music from around the world and brings new and innovative artists, musicians, and DJs to Pittsburgh. The Listening Spaces Project explores and promotes music at the community-level for positive social change and development.  Together, along with a team of community volunteers, these two entities make up Pittonkatonk – where brass music of all styles, including Balkan, New Orleans Jazz, Symphonic, and street/protest/punk bands can come together to perform.

Pittonkatonk Website: www.pittonkatonk.com

Indiegogo Campaign: www.indiegogo.com/projects/pittonkatonk-2015-a-pittsburgh-may-day-brass-bbq

Facebook Event Page: www.facebook.com/events/736736263113518/

Twitter: www.twitter.com/pittonkatonk

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